Faulkners Surveyors Expert Qualified Resident Party Wall in Sale Surveyors covering Sale and the Home Counties. Unlike numerous others, we are full time Local Party Wall Surveyors carrying out numerous Party Wall jobs every month without fault.
What is a party wall in Sale?
A party wall is a wall that sits straight on the border of land in between two (and often more) different owners. Good examples consist of the walls that separate semi-detached or terraced homes– or walls that make up the border between two gardens (party fence walls).
The Party Wall Act
The Party Wall Act 1996 applies to houses in England and Wales and was designed to prevent structure work that might jeopardize the structural stability of any shared wall (party wall) or adjoining homes. The Party Wall Act can be utilized to stop conflicts between neighbours and to assist fix them if they need to arise.
The Party Wall Act 1996 does not apply to Scotland and Northern Ireland where common law is used to settle party wall concerns.
Do I need a party wall agreement?
A party wall agreement is needed if you intend on carrying out any structure work near or on a party wall. You should tell your neighbours, offer them with a Party Wall Notice and create a Party Wall Agreement in writing. Although they will not serve the notification for you if you utilize a home builder or an architect then they ought to be able to advise you on this.
The following works require you to obtain a Party Wall Agreement:
- Any work to shared walls (party walls) between terraced and semi-detached homes.
- Work involving shared ‘party structures’, such as floors in between flats.
- Work to garden limit walls.
- Excavation works– or underpinning– to, or nearby (within 3-6m), the party wall.
- Loft conversions that mean cutting into a party wall.
- Placing a wet evidence course into a party wall.
- Making party walls thicker or greater.
- Constructing a second-storey extension above a shared wall.
- Building a new wall as much as or off the party wall.
Which jobs do not require a party wall agreement?
Not all work to party walls requires a party wall agreement. These include small works such as drilling into the wall internally to fit kitchen units or shelving. Having the wall plastered or including or changing electrical wiring or sockets will not need an agreement either.
What is a party wall notice?
A Party Wall Notice need to be given to your neighbours to provide them with notification of the works you intend to carry out to the party wall in question, between two months and a year in advance of the work starting.
Preparation permission is not required to serve a party wall notice and, because you will have up to a year to start work once the notification has actually been served, it is a good idea to do this as soon as possible in order to avoid hold-ups. You must speak to your neighbours personally first prior to serving written notice in order to assure them that you are taking the correct path and safety measures. This must assist you avoid conflicts or misconceptions, and make it possible for a speedy agreement to be written up.
You might likewise provide your neighbour details of the Party Wall Act to help them understand the procedure– point them in the direction of the Party Wall details area on the Government’s site.
In order to formally serve notice, you must write to your affected neighbour( s), including your contact details, thorough information of the work that you have planned, the date that work will begin, along with any access requirements over their residential or commercial property (possibly to get materials or devices onto site). In the case of adjacent leasehold properties, you must serve notice to the structure’s owners as well as to the tenant( s) living there.
A helpful guide, in addition to Party Wall Notice templates can be discovered on the Government’s website here. It is a good idea to confine a reply letter and envelope for the neighbours to sign and return– which, if you have actually spoken to them prior to sending out, ought to not come as a surprise.
What occurs as soon as my neighbour gets my Party Wall Notice?
They have several options:
- Give consent in writing.
- Decline consent– beginning the ‘dispute resolution process’.
- Release a counter notification, asking for that additional works be performed at the same time (something they will be needed to spend for if they will be gaining from the work, such as repairs to the shared wall).
You must wait for an action– your neighbour should let you know, in composing, within 14 days if they consent. The best case circumstance is that they consent to all the works, in composing, indicating you will not need a party wall agreement, which saves money on costs.
A counter notice must be released within a month of your notice. Then the dispute resolution procedure begins, if your neighbours don’t react within the above timescales.
What takes place if I do not serve a Party Wall Notice?
Whilst failing to get a Party Wall Agreement is not really a legal offence, not only will you be breaching a ‘statutory duty’ but you likewise risk needing to pay for damage that wasn’t your fault. Your neighbour could claim their property has been harmed by your work and without any details or proof of the previous state of the residential or commercial property (which a party wall notice would have given you) there is very little you can do.
The courts tend to take a poor view of failure to serve a party wall notice and you may be bought to pay for repair work which, in reality, may not be your duty. In addition, your neighbours could take civil action against you and have actually an injunction released to prevent any additional work till a party wall agreement is organized. This will delay the task and could increase costs.
My neighbour declined to give consent to my party wall agreement – what occurs next?
If, after serving notice, your neighbour either refuses permission or stops working to react, you are considered to be ‘in dispute.’
You have a few options here. To start with, you could contact your neighbour, listen to their issues and try to come to an agreement you are both pleased with. This is the perfect.
These notices generally ask for changes to the work defined, or extra works, or sometimes conditions such as restricted working hours. Your neighbour may need to meet a share of the expenses of any extra work that they ask for and that will benefit them.
Then you will require to appoint a party wall surveyor, if a contract is out of the concern. You might designate a surveyor to work for both of you, or each select your own. The surveyor will organize a Party Wall Award, setting out details of the work.
The Party Wall Award is a legal file setting out what, how and when work can be carried out and who will spend for it (consisting of property surveyor’s charges). If you are not happy with the award, you can appeal against it at a county court, filing an ‘appellant’s notification’ to explain why you are releasing an appeal.
Do I require a party wall surveyor?
In most cases people find they do not require the services of a party wall surveyor. There is usually no requirement to select a surveyor if your neighbour reacts to your notice offering approval in writing that works can start.
Either way, you are still responsible for making sure any damage caused throughout the works is repaired. Inspect the wall with your neighbour prior to work starts and take and share photos of the wall in order to avoid later conflicts– for instance existing cracks. Some people decide to ask a surveyor to carry out a condition study at this stage in order to minimise the danger of disputes.
If your neighbour does not give permission, you will need a Party Wall Award and, therefore, a party wall surveyor. Generally you and your neighbour will utilize simply one surveyor (a good concept as it means only one set of fees).
Fees differ, but on average, a Party Wall Award expenses around ₤ 1,000 in total.
A party wall agreement is required if you plan on bring out any structure work near or on a party wall. You must inform your neighbours, offer them with a Party Wall Notice and come up with a Party Wall Agreement in composing. Not all work to celebration walls needs a party wall agreement. Preparation approval is not needed to serve a party wall notice and, since you will have up to a year to start work as soon as the notice has been served, it is a good concept to do this as quickly as possible in order to avoid hold-ups. Examine the wall with your neighbour before work starts and take and share images of the wall in order to prevent later on disputes– for example existing fractures.
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Learn More about Party Wall
A party wall (occasionally parti-wall or parting wall, also known as common wall or as a demising wall) is a dividing partition between two adjoining buildings that is shared by the occupants of each residence or business. Typically, the builder lays the wall along a property line dividing two terraced houses, so that one half of the wall’s thickness lies on each side. This type of wall is usually structural. Party walls can also be formed by two abutting walls built at different times. The term can be also used to describe a division between separate units within a multi-unit apartment complex. Very often the wall in this case is non-structural but designed to meet established criteria for sound and/or fire protection, i.e. a firewall.
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